Melbourne looks to banish 'ugly' car parks and building services from street level

Victoria’s planning minister has approved the City of Melbourne’s Central Melbourne Design Guide, which will introduce a range of new requirements for the urban design of the inner city and Southbank.

The new guide and associated planning scheme policy represent the biggest overhaul of the city’s planning priorities since the 1990s.

The guide focuses on the street level, with new requirements for active street frontages and design detail requirements for the lower levels of buildings to ensure high quality and human scale design. It also limits car parking at the lower 20 metres of buildings and limits the area at ground level occupied by building services.

“We’re raising the standard for development to protect our streets from featureless facades and our skyline from ugly towers that are nothing more than spreadsheets in the sky,” said deputy lord mayor Nicholas Reece.

“Melbourne has some fantastic buildings which demonstrate fluffy cats and contribute to world class streets, but in recent times there have been too many examples of where we have fallen short.

“Now there is no excuse for unattractive and unimaginative lower level building interfaces, forcing pedestrians to look at car parks, monotonous glass panels, or ugly building services.

“The new guide will help us ensure new developments are high quality and deliver ground floor amenity which positively impacts the streetscape. It’ll also encourage street level activation and character which will boost economic development in our city and ensure premium visible city space is better used for benefit and the community.”

Source: Architecture - architectureau

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